Do you ever take yourself and your work too seriously?

I’m guilty of this.

When I’m under stress, I become a task-oriented monster. Get it done. Get it done. Get it done. Then super frustrated if it doesn’t get done.

Just last week I had a day where I worked 10 hours and didn’t cross one thing off my list.

Leif said I was “grumpypants” and he was right.

One of the many lessons I’ve learned from being a writer is that when we’re feeling drained, running on empty, or frustrated with a lack of productivity, sometimes we need to take a step back.

And do the exact opposite.

Sometimes when I feel the most stuck, I’ll plan a wild caper. Do something I’m dead-dog afraid of doing. Attempt something I thought I’d never do. Explore an area I’d never consider knowing.

That’s why this weekend, after a frustrating week, Leif and I took time to go on a “Beeftastic” experience.

We said “Yes” to a 4.5 hour butcher class where we learned about raising cows, cuts of meat, and where the hamburger really comes from. (Eicks!)

Vegetarians beware: Graphic pictures of meat are about to appear.

We learned about the plight of today’s farmer, ethical treatment of animals and beef, why the same cut of beef can share multiple names, and then savored dozens of cuts.

We came home full….

Not just of savory grilled meat, but fresh ideas, conversation, understanding, and wondrous research for a new Bible study I’m writing.

Why do I share this? 

Because one of the best words you’ll ever learn to say is, “Yes!”

“Yes” to learning…

“Yes” to being stretched…

“Yes” to new experiences with friends…

“Yes” to wrestling with unfamiliar issues…

“Yes” to unusual flavors…

“Yes” to thinking deeper…

“Yes” to growth…

“Yes” to trying new things…

The word that will change your life is saying Yes….

Because when you say “no” to opportunities to grow and think deeper and learn…

You break out of….

The familiar

The same old same old

Those negative spirals of thought

The focus on what’s not possible

The tendency of self-focus

And open yourself up to…

The abundant life God has called you to live. New people. New experience. New play. New fun. New joy. New delight.

Summer still contains a few more weeks to say YES!  Will you find your YES?

Maybe it’s in a local tour…

Or a Groupon you purchase on a whim…

Or an invitation to those neighbors you’ve been meaning to get to know…

Or a book or movie or documentary that stretches you…

Or a road trip you’ve been meaning to go on…

Or a camping trip you’ve been meaning to take…

Or a Bible study you’ve been meaning to launch….

Or a recipe you’ve been meaning to try…

Or one or more or all the above….

Will you say YES?

For some of you, like me, your YES! is to finally writing the story you’ve been entrusted to tell.

If that’s you, I’m about to launch the fall semester of the Write Brilliant Academy. This is a 16-session online course to go from big idea to book publishing. Right now, you can enjoy a FREE mini-course called Jumpstart My Writing to get you started writing, help you sustain your writing, and empower you to share you’re writing.

Click here to register for the FREE mini-course.

If your YES! is to writing the story you’ve been entrusted to tell, know that I’m cheering you on!

No matter what you’re saying YES! to—whether or not it includes beef and potatoes—I’d love to hear what new adventures, capers, and experiences you’re diving into.

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